Mary Wollstonecraft Research Paper

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Mary Wollstonecraft is a key figure in the early beginnings of the women’s rights movement. Wollstonecraft, born in 1759, in London, England, experienced firsthand the inequality and oppression expressed towards women during this time. Throughout her life, she fought against her odds and worked to create equality between genders. In her most well-known work, A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, published in 1792, Wollstonecraft argues a simple point: women should be as educated as men and be treated with the same respect. Her arguments are straightforward and understandable, which is why they have made such a huge difference in the way women have been viewed and treated. To this day, Mary Wollstonecraft remains an influential figure who represents…show more content…
She was born during the Enlightenment period, where reason, rationality, and humanity were the main focuses of thought. Her father was unsuccessful and was abusive towards her mother, who died in 1780. From an early age, Wollstonecraft recognized the position of submission and inequality women were put in. Her family was a representation of how different the two genders were treated. In 1778, when Wollstonecraft was 19, she left home to live with a widow, Mrs. Dawson of Bath, and later lived with her close friend, Fanny Blood, in 1782. In 1784, along with Fanny Blood and Wollstonecraft’s two sisters Everina and Eliza, Wollstonecraft opened a school, but closed it in 1786. Wollstonecraft was inspired by this experience and soon after wrote a pamphlet titled Thoughts on the Education of Daughters. This was her first work in which she shared her views on how women were treated as less than men, and how young girls should be educated in a better way. In the following years, Wollstonecraft wrote and published several other works, including A Vindication of the Rights of Woman. Wollstonecraft died September 10, 1797, in London. Throughout her life, Wollstonecraft lived in a way that was unlike most women of her time. In A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, Wollstonecraft wrote “I do not wish them to have power over men; but over themselves.” She refused to conform to society’s expectations of a…show more content…
She reasoned that because men and women were both undeniably human beings, one should not be treated in a better way than the other. She wanted women to be allowed the rights of all men- life, liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness. In her influential work A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, she writes about how society views women as weak and treats them as inferior to men. She notices that any woman who tries to step out of society’s expectations will be looked down upon- “[Women] were made to be loved, and must not aim at respect, lest they should be hunted out of society as masculine.” She points out that in order for children to be raised as respectable people, their mothers should be educated and well-respected, since it is their job to raise the children. Wollstonecraft believed that a more educated woman would make a better wife, as
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